How to Keep your Treadmill Running
Buying a treadmill is hard enough. Choosing the best out of many
treadmills in the market is nigh impossible. But once youve got the
treadmill youve always wanted, are your worries truly over? Well, they
certainly are, but only if you maintain your treadmill properly.
treadmill is probably the most expensive fitness investment youve ever
made. Its only natural therefore that you want to prolong its life. One
of the ways to doing that is to keep a regular maintenance schedule.
A quality treadmill, however, should not require frequent maintenance schedule.
Upkeep for your treadmill includes periodic dusting, and, if need be,
occasional belt lubrication. The following are some tips to help you maintain
your treadmill and prolong the life of your fitness investment.
Keep it Clean and Dust-free
The number one cause of premature
belt failure is dirt. That has always been the case ever since the first
treadmill was sold in the fitness equipment market. And the number one way of
avoiding dust from totally ruining your precious treadmill is to adopt a
cleaning routine of sorts.
Dusting between the belt and deck at least
once a week will ensure longevity of the machine. The deck should be kept dry
and debris-free at all times. In addition, make sure the area where you place
your treadmill is relatively dust-free, to minimize the dust from getting
between the belt and/or the deck.
Apply the following cleaning
procedure once a week or as needed:
Wipe down display with a mild
solution of Non-Phosphate cleaner on damp soft cotton. Cloth should be damp not
Wipe down handrails and traction strips with soft cotton cloth
and mild soap and water. Cloth should be damp not wet.
Vacuum or wipe
down the deck area between tread belt and frame.
For once a month
Unplug treadmill. Let it sit for 10 minutes. Take off motor
cover and vacuum inside the motor area, being very careful not to directly
touch the static-sensitive electronics.
Slide clean towel under tread
belt and wipe deck and under the belt. Rotate belt 180 degrees and repeat.
Apply lubrication (only when recommended) under tread belt.
Check drive belt tension and adjust as necessary.
Check tread belt
tension and tracking and adjust as necessary.
Tread Belt Properly
The best treadmills are those that provide
you with easy access to belt tracking. But even the best treadmills with the
most easily accessible belt tracking are also susceptible to stretch slightly
under initial use. That is why it is important that you adjust the tread belt
every so often to keep down stretching.
Most manufacturers include
the Allen wrench in the package when you buy a treadmill from them. Use that to
tighten both belt adjustment screws clockwise. If your manufacturer did not
supply you with an Allen wrench, use another of the right size.
¼ turn clockwise should tighten tread belt if it has loosened from
breaking in. The screws for belt adjustment are usually located at the rear end
of the treadmill. Some belts do require looser running than others so
dont be surprised if your tread belt is a little loose even when you
havent used it yet. Check the users guide before making adjustments
just to make sure.
Moreover, be sure to keep the belt running at a
low speed of around 3 mph when adjusting the belt tracking. This is the ideal
speed when making any adjustments with the screws.
Proper Alignment of Belt
The tracking adjustments may also be
used to properly align the belt of your treadmill. So, when adjusting your belt
tracking, be sure not to turn either side more than ¼ turn at a time
only. Belt tracking adjustments are almost always minor anyway, so dont
overdo your adjustments.
Roller knocking occurs with improper belt
tracking. This should be avoided at all times. If you hear a knocking noise
when running your treadmill, that most often means that you have a defective
roller. However, there are instances where the noise results from the belt
placing too much force on the roller from side to side. You will recognize the
difference between the cases in that the knocking noise in the latter will be
at a much slower rhythm than roller rotation.
One way to reduce the
load on the belt is proper tracking. Not only that, it will also help guide the
belt and ensure that the front and rear rollers are parallel. Just follow the
manufacturers directions on belt tracking to keep from misaligning or
over-stretching the belt. A word of caution: be careful not to over-tighten
belt when adjusting alignment.
Use Treadmill on Level Floor
Wondering why your treadmill is making all those squeaking
sounds? Well, before you decide to pick up the phone and call your
manufacturer, check if your treadmill is running on a non-level floor. Often,
the number one reason why treadmills make squeaking noise and its belt
mistracking is that people place their treadmills on ground that isnt
consistently leveled, without even realizing why.
have level adjustment in rear supports. If your treadmill cannot be leveled
with the floor, then level the floor with your treadmill instead.
Power Cord, Belt, and Deck
Its standard procedure
among all electronic equipment you should keep the power cord free and
away from places where people are likely going to step on it. The same rule
applies with treadmills, especially if you are using the electronic type as
opposed to its manual counterpart. Also, make sure that the power cord is clear
of the incline mechanism.
When it comes to maintenance of your
treadmills belt, it is accepted that you lubricate the belt every so
often. When you do that, try to avoid using silicone or oils, unless the
manufacturer itself recommends it. The ideal combination for a long-lasting
treadmill is often a clean, dry and dust-free bed and belt.
silicone spray when the manufacturer recommends it. And even then, be sure to
follow the manufacturers directions closely, especially when it comes to
application schedule and type of lubricant. Some treadmill decks may require
initial waxing to help reduce friction with the belt. Unless recommended by the
manufacturer, however, do not wax a deck. Lubrication to pretreated wax decks
may gum up the wax.
Ensure Low Friction between Deck and Belt
To begin with, you want low-friction contact between the deck and
belt. Damage to the motor electronics is more likely if the friction between
the deck and belt is high. In addition, high friction belts will not coast when
power is shut off. Neither will they be easy to dead-walk on when the power is
off. Basically, high friction belts can cause the motor to stall a
situation which you do not want to happen as this is one sure-fire way of
damaging your treadmills motor.
To avoid high friction contact
between the deck and the belt, be sure to follow your treadmill
manufacturers guidelines for proper deck and belt maintenance.
Lubrication when unnecessary can lead to excessive amp draw and subsequent
damage to motor electronics.
dont usually discover blow fuses, unless you are doing or having someone
do some technical diagnostics on your treadmill. And even then, it is generally
not recommended for users to replace blown fuses in the motor or motor
When replacing blown fuses, you have to use the
recommended fuse. This is true even if youre referring to an electronic
piece that isnt a treadmill. When it comes to treadmill fuses, however,
you have to understand that they are not interchangeable with automotive fuses.
And so, if you discover a blow fuse in your treadmill, do not even attempt to
make replacements on your own. Instead, contact a dealer for proper
Ground to an AC Wall Outlet
AC wall outlet, you ask? Well, with many users owning treadmills that come
equipped with computer consoles (such as those with programming) these days,
console crashes are also becoming common. A computer crash may be anything that
occurs out of the ordinary, such as a display blanking out, locking up, or not
recording information. It could even be that the treadmill simply wouldnt
shut down altogether. One way to determine that a crash is not due to a defect
is to turn the treadmill power off and then on again.
The process of
cycling power on and off will reset the computers most of the time. If the
crash is caused be a computer defect, this will likely result in loss of
control to incline and speed or the treadmill may not even start at all. One
way to safeguard your treadmill from console crashes is to plug the equipment
into a grounded AC outlet.
If, however, the crash occurs frequently
or is repeated, then consider the option of having it replaced. Most
manufacturers that offer warranties in their products include console crashes
in their warranty.
Read the Owners Manual
All of the above are meant to be steps you take once everything else in the
owners manual fails to yield the result you want. But as what the old
adage says: An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.
No amount of repair and maintenance tips can compare to what you can prevent by
just reading through your treadmill owners manual.
contains all the tips and advice for your treadmills proper maintenance
something you can really use if you want to save from costly repairs.
All maintenance procedures should be listed in the owners manual, along
troubleshooting guidelines, parts listings, and instructions on repairs. Damage
to your treadmill from improper use or unauthorized tampering can result in the
manufacturer voiding the warranty. That is why, if you are in doubt about
proper handling of your treadmill, contact either your dealer or the
manufacturer for recommended care.